Pregnancy hormones, including progesterone, relaxin and hCG are working to relax your internal body parts to enable them to make room for your growing baby later on. These hormones may also relax bodily functions: constipation is a common pregnancy complaints. To help avoid constipation, eat plenty of fresh fruit and fibre, and if you continue to have problems, talk to your GP or LMC. For more information on a healthy diet during pregnancy, click here.
Have you decided on a Lead Maternity Carer yet? If you haven't already, now is a good time to book for your first antenatal visit for between weeks 10 and 12. If you wish to use an independent midwife as your LMC it's important to book in with one early as they fill up very quickly. Alternatively, you can choose to use the team of midwives at your local hospital. You will see your LMC monthly from around 10 weeks until you are around 28 weeks, then fortnightly until 36 weeks. After 36 weeks, you will have weekly appointments. For help with choosing the right LMC for you, check out our section on Types of Antenatal Care prepared by Auckland obstetrician Dr Anil Sharma.
Between 8-20 weeks your baby goes through a period of rapid development. He or she now measures about 1.6-2cm(20mm) long from crown to rump. This measurement is used in the first half of your pregnancy because your baby's legs will often be bent in the womb, making the head-to-foot measurement difficult.His or her internal organs are now becoming more specialised and complicated: your baby's liver is producing red blood cells until bone marrow is formed to do this job. Blood is flowing now through a basic circulatory system.
Your baby's hands and feet are continuing to develop into webbed like fingers and toes. Your baby's nostrils and top lip are forming and a thin layer of skin will have developed over baby's body and eyelids. Through this skin you can see veins running through baby's body and bones that are starting to harden and grow.
The genital region is beginning to shape up this week although the actual organs (male or female) will not have developed yet.
Things to Consider:
*Choosing antenatal care
*Continuing with your normal exercise routine. Exercise is great for muscle tone, strength and endurance. This will help you manage added weight gain and a demanding labor and birth.
*Taking Folic Acid
*Get plenty of Vitamin C which helps with cell growth. You can find this naturally in such foods as oranges, kiwifruit, and blackcurrants.
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